Short Essay Questions Mrcog

The following is the book list for the preparation of MRCOG Part 2 Short Essay Examination. This list is based on the recommendations of the RxPG members who have passed their MRCOG Part 2 Short Essay exam. MRCOG Part 2 short essay exam consists of 5 obstetrics and five gynaecology questions.

Essential Books

  • Short Essays, MCQs and OSCEs for MRCOG Part 2
    Justin Konje

    Designed to help the candidate in preparation for each paper of the MRCOG Part 2 examination, this title concentrates on testing theoretical and practical knowledge of obstetrics and gynaecology as recommended in the syllabus through questions covering aspects of medicine, surgery and paediatrics relevant to the practice of both. The volume opens with some general advice to candidates on examination preparation and how to tackle the different styles of question. The short essay section that follows includes 200 essay questions, grouped according to subject for ease of revision. For each essay, the candidate is provided with a list of common mistakes to avoid; the key points that the examiners will be looking for in the answer; and a full essay incorporating the key points described. The 300 multiple-choice questions forming the second section incorporate the variable stem / true-false style of the current exam. Short explanatory notes are included with the answers. The text concludes with a section of OSCEs mimicking the stations that the candidate will encounter during the three-hour examination. As recommended by the RCOG, the questions have been designed to test factual knowledge and understanding, problem solving skills, diagnosis, investigation, treatment, and communication and clinical skills.

  • Short Essay Questions for MRCOG Part 2
    M.A. Khaled, A.G. Ellis

    A collection of approximately 100 short essay questions in 10 papers with model answers for the new MRCOG part 2 examination. Also includes a chapter which explains the OSCE and how to prepare for it. The content is highly relevant for the part II exams. During the last few exams recently, many questions set were taken out from the book directly. The book is therefore a must for the MRCOG II exams. The content is highly relevant, and questions were drawn from a range of highly relevant topics in the specialty. The only disadvantage of this book is that it does not break down the award of the marks for the different points mentioned in the essay. The other short essay book in the market by Birmingham medical staff is slightly better with regards to this. Overall, it is a must for all trainees.

Semi essential Books
  • Mrcog II: Short Essay Questions
    Khaldoun Sharif, Parveen Abedin

    MRCOG Short Essay Questions is the essential aid for all trainees studying for the membership examination of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. This book contains 150 short essay questions, clearly structured to facilitate both learning and practice. Questions are divided primarily into obstetrics and gynaecology and secondly by main topics such as infertility, operative gynaecology and antenatal care. The answers are written in the form of bullet points; a format that not only clearly identifies the key points but also emulates the structure of the model answers given to the examiners by the RCOG. Khaldoun Sharif is a consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Birmingham Women's Hospital, and has a proven track record as an author of MRCOG revision books. His co-author, Parveen Abedin recently passed the examination and has therefore provided invaluable insights that have ensured the content is both appropriate and up-to-date.

  • MCQs and Short Answer Questions for MRCOG: An Aid to Revision and Self-assessment
    David Luesley, Philip Baker

    This is a companion volume to Obstetrics and Gynaecology and represents all the curricular elements covered in that text. This volume, consisting of MCQs and Short Essay Questions, is intended to be used in conjunction with, and independently of, the main text as a self-assessment aid throughout training and during revision for MRCOG examinations. Both the MRCOG Part 1 and Part 2 include MCQ papers and the MRCOG Part 2 includes a short essay question paper. Therefore, this volume will assist with revision for both papers.

  • Basic Science in Obstetrics and Gynaecology: a Textbook for Mrcog Part 2
    Michael De Swiet, Phillip Bennett, Geoffrey Chamberlain (Editor), De Swiet Michael (Editor), Philip Bennett (Editor)
    A textbook covering the basic sciences relevant to obstetrics and gynaecology at a level suitable for doctors specialising in the field . The chapters match the syllabus of the specialist UK exam - the MRCOG. Not much useful for MRCOG part 2 though.

If you find this list useful, please do not forget to give a feedback on it to us. Your feedback is important to us as it helps in keeping this list fresh and useful. You can also provide us with your own list for MRCOG Part 2 Short Essay exam and we will be happy to publish it in your name on RxPG site. Remember that this list was initially prepared from the feedback of RxPG visitors like you.

How to pass the MRCOG first time!

Most of the advice in this section is from Tom McFarlane.

But the best  is from Elaine, who won the Gold Medal in 2010, Lucy, who won it in 2011 and Gemma, who won it in 2013.

Also the experience of Asma, who has not worked in the UK and passed in 2010, giving the perspective of the "overseas" candidate.

And Anupama. winner of the Vijaya Patil award 2013.

This is gold-dust.

In fact, it is better.

It is priceless and you would be really stupid not to go through it in detail.

Ignore my stuff, if you will, but not theirs!


Changes to the exam in September 2016.

A new MRCOG part 3 exam was introduced in September 2016. 

The part 1 is unchanged.

The part 2 is the written exam, with no OSCE.

The part 3 replaces the OSCE, the "clinical assessment".

There are fuller details here.

It has the benefit that those who pass the written exam will be able to sit the OSCE four times before having to take the written exam again.

This is a big improvement, as most people pass the OSCE at the first or second attempt and it always seemed hard that people who passed the written but failed the OSCE had to pass the written again before being allowed to attempt the OSCE.

There are a lot of links.

The ones to the RCOG website mostly do not work.

The RCOG recently changed its website and all the addresses were changed.

I laboriously "copied and pasted" all the new addresses from the RCOG website, which should have guaranteed accuracy.

But for some mysterious reason they do not work.

I have not had time to sort it out.

Put "format", "syllabus" or whatever you are looking for into the search box and you will get there.


List of contents.

  1.     you must be eligible to sit the exam

  2.    apply to the College in good time and check they got your application

  3.     allocate adequate time for preparation

  4.     prepare thoroughly

  5.     teaching as learning

  6.     know the format and syllabus 

  7.    what to read

  8.     develop techniques to enable you to read constructively

  9.     learn and practise

  10.     try to spot essay topics

  11.      master CTG interpretation

  12.      build a last-minute revision list of difficult-to-remember topics

  13.     book study leave for the week before the written exam 

  14.     OSCE skills:

  15.            hone your communication skills

  16.             make sure you have the necessary practical knowledge 

  17.             prepare all the known types of station

  18.            go on an OSCE course 

  19.     Go on a course for the written exam

  20.     consider your special requirements if you haven't worked in the UK

  21.     other sources of information


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1.    Apply to the College in good time & check they got your application.

The College publishes calendars for the part 2 and part 3exams.

These give:

     the dates of forthcoming exams and where you can sit them.

     the closing dates for getting your training and certificates approved.

       the closing dates for applying to sit the exams.

The College rejects all late applications and won't listen to any excuses.

But it has an unreliable system for booking people in.

In a recent round of exams I had one DRCOG trainee and one MRCOG trainee who were refused permission to sit the exam.

This was on the basis that they had applied late.

Yet both had applied in good time.

One had even had her cheque cashed by the College!

My advice is to check a week or so after you submit your application that you are definitely on the list.

I have enquired of the College about this problem and am told that an improved system will be introduced shortly.

You would have thought that the simple answer would be to send confirmation of receipt to every applicant!

What's so difficult about that?


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2.    Allocate adequate time for preparation.

3.    Prepare thoroughly.

If you do not know enough, you fail!

Obvious and basic.

If you can find someone preparing to sit the exam at the same time as you, that can be very helpful.

You can prepare stuff to share and motivate each other.

If you arrange to meet a couple of times a week, it will make you work even if tired or fed-up.


You need to know the exam regulations:

      part 2 regulations

     part 3 regulations.

You need to know about the new extended matching questions.

The Collegehas examples on its web site.

We will practise EMQs in the tutorials.

Likewise the SBAs, examples of which are on the College website.


You need to know the examination syllabus.


Make sure you have enough knowledge.

Make sure you have read appropriately.


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Take every opportunity to teach, medical students, junior colleagues, nurses, midwives etc.

You have to prepare and it will help you know and remember stuff.

Learn humility and practise honesty.

No one knows everything.

I almost never have a MRCOG tutorial session in which I do not find something about which I am ignorant or unsure.

It is good to admit that you don't know - but always make sure that you find out afterwards.

Your audience will appreciate your honesty and humanity.

No one likes liars or people pretending to be God-like.


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Know the format and syllabus.

This is so obvious I am almost embarrassed to mention it.

You need to know about the introduction of part 3 of the exam in 2016.

The written exam consists of EMQs (Extended Matching Questions) and SBAs (Single Best Answers).


You need to know the format and syllabus.

The format is here

The syllabus is here


MCQ paper 1 and EMQ paper 1 relate to modules 5, 6, 7, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 & 18

MCQ paper 2 and EMQ paper 2 relate to modules 2, 3, 8, 9, 10, 11 & 12



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4.    Suggested Reading.

Click here for a list of suitable reading materials.

The most important things to read are the RCOG  and NICE guidelines plus all the TOG articles for at least 3 years.

Note the box in the RCOG advice with links to more than Green-top guidelines: consent advice, SIPs etc.

There is advice on:

   clinical governance,


   joint guidelines, etc. 

Read the clinical guidance from the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare.

Most successful candidates will tell you that the bulk of the exam is covered by these sources.

So, it essential that you know them thoroughly.

It is very interesting as it shows how textbooks have become of secondary importance.


I advise my trainees to do the following:

  1. Get through all of my MCQs. The first is on this web page - it's a good way to get you started although the exam no longer has MCQs. All the papers and answers are on Dropbox. If you want access, send me an e-mail.

  2. Learn -don't just read - everything published by the College and NICE.

  3.     make out a card or cards for every RCOG Green-top guideline and NICE equivalent (or get them into whatever revision system you are using).

  4.     don't forget the RCOG stuff like  clinical governance, consent etc.

  5. Read all the "TOG" articles for the past three years.

  6. Read all the Obstetrics Gynaecology & Reproductive Medicine articles for the past three years if you have time but they are much less important than TOG.

  7. Make sure you do all the EMQs and MCQs in TOG & OGRM: even better make out cards - identical questions have featured in the exam.

  8. Keep an eye on the RCOG website: in the March 2010 exam teenage pregnancy and swine flu were on the website and featured in the essays.

  9. The above is the essential core of your preparation. What follows is helpful, but if you have not done the above, you are likely to fail and some successful candidates will tell you that the above is all that they did.   

  10. Read topics not covered elsewhere in a MRCOG textbook.

  11. Read topics in obstetric medicine not covered elsewhere in "Nelson-Piercy".

  12. Read the papers I have written on stuff that is not well-covered in the textbooks.

  13. Know the Maternal Mortality Report, MBRRACE  - we will cover this in the tutorials.

  14. Know the recent facts on Perinatal Mortality.

  15. Read a bit about statistics, etc. E.g.  "how to read a paper" by Trisha Greenhalgh. It is based on BMJ articles and you can find most of it on the

    BMJ website. There is also a copy of the 2nd. edition on-line which would be OK for your purposes and is cheaper than the latest version. There is another good book: "The Doctor's Guide to Critical Appraisal

    We will have tutorial from Julie Morris on statistics and how to criticise a paper.

  16.  Cancer Research UK has the latest statistics on cancer incidence & mortality and staging, e.g.  cervical cancer.

  17. Patient UK has useful, up-to-date brief articles on selected topics. Have a look at PPROM which gives most of what you need.

  18. Most importantly, read in an analytical and constructive way.

  19. Learn and practise techniques appropriate to the type of question.

  20. Read parallel subjects: genetics, neonatology, family planning etc.

  21. Most of the genetics you need is covered in the MCQs and the questions I will give in the tutorials.


I would guess that you have now done about 95% of the necessary preparation.

And easily know enough to pass.

But do the following to get up to 100%.


  1. Consider subscribing to "StratOG". There have recently been questions from it in the exam.

  2. Use subsidiary sources of advice.

  3. Read as many of the small MRCOG texts on EMQs & SBAs as possible.

  4. "High Risk Pregnancy" is a mini-encyclopaedia: read selectively from it for things not covered elsewhere.

  5. You need to know the management of the common emergencies.

  6. The "Oxford handbook of O&G" is portable and a basic summary.

  7. Know the key joint RCOG publications,

  8. Think of important subjects that are not routine in UK practice.

  9. HIV will always rear its ugly head.

  10. Use the RCOG series "Subject X for the MRCOG and Beyond" to fill in gaps, though some are now a bit dated..

  11. Keep up to date with HRT and other fast-changing subjects.

  12. Talk to colleagues who have recently passed the exam about how they prepared..

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a. It iscrucial that you know everything the RCOG has produced: “Green-Top” guidelines etc.

You can access all of this in the section "Guidelines" on the RCOG website .

The RCOG website gives useful links to other sources of guidelines.


There are loads of other guidelines.

Patient UK has links to loads of guidelines from the UK and elsewhere. 

It also has very useful summaries of conditions. Have a look at its version of PPROM.

My experience is that its materials are kept up-to-date.

Cancer UK has the latest statistics and useful summaries.

E.g. the staging of cervical cancer.

Don't waste time on esoteric material.

The RCOG and

are fast-changing and you need to be sure that you are up-to-date with the latest advice.

You can get this from the

E.g. The British Menopause Society & Women's Health Concern recommendations on HRT from 2013.


   hormone replacement therapy

   alternative and complementary remedies 

   local oestrogen for atrophy of the vaginal skin.

The government issues advice via MRHA, "The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency".

The Chief Medical Officer also pronounces on the subject when something alters.  

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